Electricians need to be able to perform a wide variety of electrical jobs from wiring to appliance installation to electrical tests and troubleshooting. But if you’re starting out as a freelance electrician or trying to build your own electrical contractor business, you probably want to know what services to offer that could make your business stand out.

One option is to consider some attractive, growing niches that could help you specialize in high-demand services. Here are three niches electricians should consider specializing in.

Alternative Energy Sources

Alternative energy sources are an ever more popular way to obtain electricity. As more and more American homeowners and businesses buy and install solar panels, wind turbines, and geothermal systems, this industry continues to grow. The average speed of solar power increase in the US, for instance, is about 50% per year recently.

Installing, servicing, and repairing the electrical components of these systems can be lucrative for an electrician. Because these alternative power sources are newer types of systems and require specialized skills and knowledge, consider extra training in these fields if you want to attract these types of electrical jobs.

For instance, for solar power training, you could earn the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners’ certification. A designated certification for solar panel installation can help reassure clients that you’re an expert in not only electrical wiring but in solar panels specifically.

Smart Homes

Smart home devices now range from smart lights and thermostats to smart door locks and smart dog doors. Many smart devices, such as thermostats, can require electrical work for both installation and repairs.

Useful and trendy smart home devices are still being developed, too. The high rates at which people install and use smart devices means that the smart home industry as a whole has experienced high growth rates.

If you want to add smart home work to your repertoire, consider some training in the networking side of smart home devices as well as the electrical side. This will allow homeowners who need help with the system to have the assurance that you’ll be able to diagnose any issue, no matter which side of the operation causes problems.

Home Energy Audits

Home energy audits and ratings are another specialty you could add to your business. A home energy audit can include some electrical things you’ll already have the expertise for, such as whether an air conditioner works correctly or whether components such as the compressor and fan use extra energy because of neglect.

However, efficiency audits can also include less strictly electrical concepts, like insulation and air leaks. Homeowners who want an energy audit may be interested in the environment, or they may simply want to save money on their AC bills. This field is expected to grow as the value of energy audits becomes more widely known.

As with any other specialized niche, energy auditing can help you access more opportunities, especially if you have designated certification that proves you’re well-educated in that specialty. For instance, you could earn the Home Energy Rater designation. This certification is offered through the EPA’s Energy Star for Homes Partners program.

These three niches can help you bring in more business for your contracting company, become a specialist in a high-demand field so you can charge higher rates, or even help expand your customer base.

For more information about the education and training we provide for both experienced and prospective electricians, get in touch with Independent Electrical Contractors of Greater Cincinnati today. We can help you achieve continuing education hours or get you on the path to earning your qualifications for the very first time.